The Horrors of Kwiksave: The Demise of Ian Banks

The Horrors of Kwiksave’ is a candid recollection of my memories working at Kwiksave (the now-defunct discount supermarket chain) as a 'Stock Lad'.

I wasted over FOUR years of my life in this maggot-infested hellhole and still occasionally wake up drenched in sweat after enduring a nightmare in which I am working there still.

Some of the names have been slightly changed simply to save my arse in case anyone takes offence at some of the details regarding my facts or opinions.

Many of the people mentioned are now dead as this happened so long ago, but their siblings are not.

This is the 'HIVE Special Edition' of a multi-part autobiographical story (with a little over-embellishment on some of the details) I posted on STEEM over 3 years ago.

It contains a LOT more detail and content than the original and will fill in many gaps that were missed the first time around.

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Other Articles in this Series:
Chapter One: A Prelude to the Best Job in the Land
Chapter Two: The Job Centre
Chapter Three: The Interview
Chapter Four: Christmas is Coming
Chapter Five: The Changing of the Blades
Chapter Six: The Staff
Chapter Seven: The Auxiliary Staff and The Load
Chapter Eight: The Sugar Maniac
Chapter Nine: The Accusation and "Big Lad"
Chapter Ten: Naggy
Chapter Eleven: Shit & Noise
Chapter Twelve: The Death of Mort
Chapter Thirteen: The Time of Many Managers
Chapter Fourteen: The Calm before the Storm
Chapter Fifteen: David Dire
Chapter Sixteen: Bad Totty
Chapter Seventeen: Tracy, The Wild One
Chapter Eighteen: 'Buff-It-up'

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‘Some kids are best left to fend for themselves, and others were born to stack shelves’ – Steven Wilson


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Chapter Nineteen: The Demise of Ian Banks

...'Preface - December 1980'...

'WARNING: BAD LANGUAGE BELOW'

If you think we are going back in time you would be correct. Bear with me as this mini ‘Back to the Future’ section is relevant to what comes next.

A few days after joining Kwiksave I noticed another Stock Lad who Mort had failed to mention.

Relaying information was not a skill Mort excelled at but nevertheless, I was delighted to find I was not the only dimwit to be working as shelf filler.


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I tried in earnest to converse to Dave Banks who I discovered from Carrot was a part-time worker and who was completing his sixth form education at a local very respected Grammar school.

Banks didn’t want to even acknowledge my existence, never mind chat. Grammar lads were up their own arses to the extreme.

Within a couple of months, he was gone, without any explanation or reason.

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...'August 1983'...

Kwiksave appeared to be financially buoyant in this particular year. As well as employing an insane Welsh cleaner and crew we were informed that THREE full-time stock lads were now insufficient to keep the store topped up with cans of beans and that a part-time slave would be joining us.

Not only that, it was the younger brother of that conceited twat, Dave Banks who appeared to be following the footsteps of his elder sibling.

In no time at all Ian Banks joined the ranks, quickly figured out Martin was top dog, and duly became his new sycophant.


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...'not the real Ian Banks, he was someone you wanted to hit'...

As much as I liked Martin, I could not abide this ‘fresh from Grammar school’ jumped up little shit.

Martin did not appear to notice the over-attention he was receiving from Banks, or if he did, did not care.

It seemed 'young Banks' liked to create as much hassle as possible for the likes of myself and Welder, whispering into Martin's ear much like a mischievous imp would to his semi-accommodating master.

I say this as Martin would go along with his irritating 'plans' sometimes while trying to appear autonomous.

I figured that this young Banks had been primed by Elder brother Dave, who would remember me, and had no particular reason to show me any dislike besides the unwarranted conceit he showed.

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Overalls would go missing, cheese snacks and crisps in the canteen vanished, stock knives that were there one minute would be gone the next.

It was never anything serious, just general annoyances and I was quite convinced our new part-timer was the culprit.

After several weeks of tolerating Banks, myself and Welder strategized a revenge plan, which worked out rather better than expected.

The back shop contained a huge ‘cage’ that was full of cardboard, broken up and flattened.

Every so often one of us would need to climb in the cage to jump on the boxes, thus creating even more space by flattening them some more.

One day we waited for Banks to enter the cage, to do his jumping. He was well inside the cage at this point, back turned, and was not expecting a pallet to be placed on his head.

I distinctly remember hearing a crack as it hit him and a yell of surprise. It probably didn't hurt but the confused look in his eyes told us everything.

...'he was not expecting it'...

We had beforehand prepared some handy jam pots and cracked eggs that were stacked in the damages section.

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Using the ammunition, we freely reined these down on his head and body through the side slits of the cage in delight, while he helplessly howled his frustration at us in the form of every expletive known to man.

The horde of food relentlessly continued until we had exhausted our eggy and jammy weapons arsenal.

The whole escapade was over within minutes. We didn't want to get caught or even have Martin witness the event.

Martin, fortunately, appeared to be occupied during this time, and Dire no doubt had his feet up in the office and would have been ogling one of the checkout operators.

Banks managed to free himself from the cage after we left him stinking and sticky in a tangled mess.

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...'the Kwiksave toilets resembled ones I find during my Urban Explores'...

He was almost crying when he left the back shop, headed for the derelict toilets to clean himself up and look semi-presentable

The looks we received while passing us were deadly and he was muttering words of revenge.

While the jubilance of victory was still upon us, we deliberated on the justice that could well be incoming shortly.

Nobody said a word, and if Martin or Dire noticed the horrible stench coming from his overall that day they cared not to notice. It was simply as if nothing had happened.

If there was one thing I can commend him for is that he didn’t snitch.

Banks left shortly after his 'cage incident' giving no reason, his usually bouncy attitude miraculously gone.


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...'the cage was similar to this but around 7 feet tall. One had to climb the outside, and then jump in crushing all the crap beneath your feet'...

Like nearly everyone who escaped Kwiksave, we never heard or saw him again.

Martin’s tenure was also due to end; I think he had simply had enough of the travelling combined with that pittance of pay. I was sad to see him go and we were now down to two stock lads again.

From THREE full time, and ONE part-time Stock Lads we were once again down to the bare minimum. Dire did not seem to want to replace Martin or find a part-time replacement for Banks.

Without the exuberant Martin, I started to get depressed. Conversation with Welder was all good and well, but topics beyond Neanderthal level were pushing it.

Within weeks a new checkout girl would arrive and get the attention of @slobberchops. Love was in the air.


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To be continued...


Cover Picture is a combination of free sources from here and here, combined and edited with Luminar 4. Any unsourced images are my own.

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26 comments
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Haha, at least he didn't snitch. That is always a sign of some kind of character.

And love in the air, wasn't being a young lad fun!!

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I would have been unemployed for sure. That fat fuck of a boss liked me as much as Mort did hehe..., the love bit.. I was a particularly bad at!

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I was awful at the love game when I was a lad. It took me quite some time to find my stride!

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Bad day in the office for Banks, all worked out except being short handed. Good old eggs and jam while crammed in a small place, called justice!

@tipu curate

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It was not the end of the Banks tribe, another one was going to join the ranks of Kwiksave at a later date. This one was much better looking!

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Will wait for next rendition, this hit close to home how some feel. Hopefully new operators had skirts not shirts with pimple faces loaded with attitude....., eye candy 😂

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retail really is fucking shyte isnt it...

i suffered 4 years of it... mostly shyte but met some great people... ate loads of pepperami's and got wanked off in the backup fridge...

looking back, it doesnt seem that bad lol

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It was the early 80's and yet I remember all this shit.They say you remember your traumatic moments no matter how long ago it happened. This was one long one.., and as such the details are still up there.

Congrats on the wank, @grindle tells me he had similar moments (as a Kwiksave Manager), besides putting his feet up.. as their training required.

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lol.. my store was just one big fuckathon.. god knows how many babies were produced there... this was the early 90's

some fucking stories... thats for sure..

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Probably wouldn't be able to get away with that sort of thing today. You would bet arrested for hazing or something like that. It's hard to imagine that anyone actually enjoys working in retail. I know there are people who do though...

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It's what you did when you left school as an uneducated unemployable loser. Nobody wanted to do it, so I did. I did all the wrong things when I was young and thought I knew it all.

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Reading this makes me miss how easy retail was. It was so mind numbingly boring that people would start rivalries with other workers or sometimes even customers to pass the time.

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The work was not easy, manual labour, bending down, lifting heavy boxes sucked. I was young then and it kept me fit, other than that there were no redeeming qualities about it.

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No wonder you wake up in a sweat from a nightmare hellish back again at Kwiksave. I reckon we have all been in a job putting up with the conditions, treatment and twats for the meagre pay. But, @slobberchops as enhanced as your autobiography is your place seemed much dire than normal.
Happy day to you.

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For the most part it was eternally dull. I'm writing all this for my daughter who can read it when I'm gone. Right now she's not in the least interested.

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One day she'll read and re-read it and feel you there with her. I know, as someone whose parents are both gone, the feeling I get from a photograph or an old postcard is so heartfelt, I think back upon all the time I could have had video or more written moments of my time with them, this is an amazing way to leave a bit of your young self for her to hold dear in the future.

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He did have some redeeming character is not being a snitch. He didn't last long, but, thankfully, the Banks are cleaned out once again. Eggs-tra quick this time.

Haven't we all had less than great jobs? You win though, I did my bout with a grocery store for one day! Pathmark. I was a checker and I actually couldn't touch the meat. It grossed me out.

Weird.

Keep those KwikSave coming! Love is in the Air!

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They are tough to write and take effort these. I have to remember what happened and as it's so long ago, its all a bit flickery.

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The work is not easy. I don’t like that job, coworkers that pretends to like you, horrible boss that as no human feeling.

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That was an enjoyable one. I was a jumped up grammar school kid before we moved to the states. A year of sound ass whoopings by some of the redneck boys I went to school with (most of who I was related to) ironed that straight out. Years later when I'd visit family this side of the pond I'd bump into the odd classmate. Couldn't stand'em. The air of supposed upper middle class they tried to put off just struck me as greasy. Great read slobberchops. Like with meesterboom, you're blog is always a great stop by for a fun read.

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Thanks for the comment, I try and make them interesting though in reality working for Kwiksave was mostly a borefest. I was not a grammer lad though I was too bright for the shitty school I attended, but at the time did not know that.

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